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When it comes to a party dish like biryani, it is difficult to know how to make it healthy. One way is to replace the rice with brown rice, and switch up the meat with white boneless chicken, or fish or lentils. When it comes to biryani, reduce your portions to no more than 1 cup of rice (measure this out), 1/2 cup of meat. Fill the remaining plate with a salad or mixed vegetables. Some people like to eat eggplant curry (baigan ka bharta) with it. Remember to complete you dairy intake by having a side of yogurt with cucumber, tomato salad. These sides should fill you up enough to make you control your portions. Remember half your plate should be filled with vegetables if you want to eat healthy and maintain your goals.



Watch out for sodium in this recipe! Make sure to check the nutrition facts panel (on the right) for detailed nutrition information, this panel measures the nutrients for 1/2 a cup of biryani (which includes the 1/2 cup rice and 1/4 cup meats). If you are using different portions, make sure you double everything up to know how much of each nutrient you are actually getting. The daily value numbers in red indicates that the recipe has high amounts of nutrient that you need to be cautious of (fat, sodium or cholesterol) and the green indicates that this recipe has a healthy amount of the ingredients you need. Use the table to keep track of your daily intake of calories, nutrients and vitamins and ensure you check the serving size on the panel to control your portions.


Ingredients for Rice:

1 kg (or 5 cups)    Boiled brown rice with the spices below

2                                   Black cardamom

3                                   Green cardamom

1 Tbsp                       Cumin seed

8 – 10,                       Black peppercorn

2 inch                        Cinnamon stick

3 – 4                           Green chilli, cut from the middle

4 – 5                           Cloves

3 tsp                           Salt


Ingredients for Meat Marinade:


1.5 kg                          Chicken, breast

2 cups                         Yogurt, 1% 

2 Tbsp                        Ginger & Garlic paste

1 Tbsp                        Cumin powder

1 Tbsp                        Coriander powder

2 – 3 Tbsp                 Saffron (mixed in pinch of water)

6 Tbsp                         Lemon juice

3 – 4                             Green chilli, cut from the middle

1 tsp                             Turmeric powder

1.5 tsp                         Salt

1 tsp                             Red chilli powder

1/2 cup                       Canola oil

6 medium                  Onions

4                                     Tomatoes


Servings: 20 (1/2 cup each)



  1. Boil the rice 80% with the spices mentioned above, under the rice and keep aside.
  2. In a large pan add meat, lemon juice, ginger & garlic paste, yogurt, salt, cumin powder, red chilli powder, turmeric, coriander powder, fried onions,green chillies mix very well, cover and keep in the fridge for 1 hour.
  3. Over a high flame cook the meat for 12 to 15 minutes, then add about 4 cups of water mix well and wait for a boil, as it boils cover and cook on low to medium flame till the meat completely cooks and the oil comes on surface.
  4. Now in a large pot add a layer of boiled rice, then meat, remaining fried onions, fresh coriander, again rice, meat, and last layer of rice, top it with the fried onions, fresh coriander, a few green chillies and saffron water on all sides.
  5. Cover the lid with a tea towel and place it on the layered pot of rice and meat, then cook for first 5 minutes on high flame and then lower the flame low to medium and simmer for further 10 minutes.
  6. Biryani is ready to serve hot.


Recipe Adapted from:


Check Out our South Asian + Weight Loss Meal Plans, which includes Biryani!